Registration open: Cultures and Commemorations of War: An Interdisciplinary Seminar Series

Workshop One: Why Remember? War and Memory Today

Friday 10 November, 10am – 5.30pm
Rothermere American Institute, University of Oxford
Funded by a British Academy Rising Stars Engagement Award

This interdisciplinary seminar series ‘Cultures and Commemorations of War’ brings together early career researchers and advanced scholars working on the memory of war in a range of disciplines with practitioners, policy makers, charities, and representatives from the media and culture and heritage industries. Through a series of three one-day workshops held in Oxford and London in 2017-18, this series aims to foster an interdisciplinary dialogue about the history and nature of war commemoration across time and its cultural, social, psychological and political iterations.

This first workshop seeks to assess the current field of war and memory studies and consider the impact of recent centenary commemorations, such as the ongoing First World War commemorations and the removal of confederate statues across the US. The morning workshop is led by ECRs and will include discussion of readings circulated two weeks before the event. It is open to everyone.

Registration is free and open to all! Please register here: bit.ly/2ihZd02

Any questions, please email: alice.kelly@rai.ox.ac.uk

10am: Coffee and Registration
10.30-12.30pm: Workshop led by ECRs – Kevin Waite, James Wallis, Emma Login, Alice Kelly
12.30-1.30pm: Lunch
1.30-1.45pm: Opening Remarks for Afternoon Session – Alice Kelly
1.45-3pm: Panel: The Materiality of Remembrance – Jennifer Iles & Layla Renshaw, chaired by Hanna Smyth
3-3.30pm: Coffee
3.30-4.30pm: Keynote – David Rieff, in conversation with Alice Kelly
4.30-5.30pm: Closing Roundtable – Elleke Boehmer, David Rieff, Adrian Gregory, Sara Haslam
5.30pm: Drinks, followed by dinner in college

Vacancy: Part-time Research Coordinator – ‘Lest We Forget’, Oxford

Faculty of English Language and Literature, Oxford
Grade 5: £24,565 p.a. (pro rata)
Vacancy ID: 131367

The Faculty of English Language and Literature seeks to appoint a research co-ordinator for the ‘Lest We Forget’ project. The project sets out to crowd-source content from the public related to the First World War collecting the material for free reuse online. This will be a national project co-ordinating local digital collection days across the country run by volunteers in which members of the local community will bring in material they own related to the war for digitisation.

The postholder will work primarily on co-ordinating the project activities, liaising with volunteers, and keeping the project plan. The successful candidate will possess excellent organisational skills, have experience in social media and online communications, and some experience of project delivery. It is particularly suitable for someone interested in working with project management and outreach and/or interested in WW1.

Since this is a part-time post (0.2FTE – 7.25 hours per week), it is recognised that there will be a need to prioritise different areas at different times, and the precise allocation of duties and hours will be decided in consultation with the Project Director.

Applications for this vacancy are to be made online. You will be required to upload a supporting statement as part of your online application.

The closing date for applications is 12.00 midday on 18 October 2017.

CfP: Close Encounters in War – Special Issue

Close Encounters in War Journal is a new independent and peer-reviewed journal aimed at studying war as a human experience, through interdisciplinary and multidisciplinary approaches ranging from the Humanities to the Social Sciences. The launch issue (n. 0) of Close Encounters in War Journal will be a Special Issue dedicated specifically to irregular warfare and titled “Close encounters in irregular and asymmetric warfare”.

Wars in general are cultural phenomena, among the most ancient and deeply rooted aspects of human cultural evolution: investigating their meaning, by reflecting on the ways we experience wars and conflicts as human beings is therefore essential. Conflict is deeply intertwined with language, culture, instincts, passions, behavioural patterns and with the human ability to represent concepts aesthetically. The concept of “encounter” is therefore fundamental as it involves experience, and as a consequence it implies the idea that the fact of encountering war shapes and develops our minds and affects our behaviour, questioning habits and values, prejudices and views of the world.

One of the most ancient types of warfare is what today is referred to as ‘irregular warfare’, as opposed to ‘conventional warfare’, which is a relatively more recent development. The combat strategies and tactics used by tribal warriors, modern guerrillas, resistance fighters and terrorists have recently been attracting the attention of military historians, strategists and intelligence experts due to the widespread terror threat, but how do human beings experience this particular type of warfare? Does it seem more threatening and scary because it can involve civilians more deeply? or because it blurs the traditional idea of war as open confrontation with a recognisable enemy? What drives non-combatants to arm themselves and become fighters? Is irregular warfare more violent, brutal and dehumanising than conventional warfare and if so, why? What is their cultural, linguistic and anthropological impact? And finally, is irregular warfare adopted also by regular armies? What is the impact of such warfare on the war-experience of the combatants involved?

For the launch issue (n. 0) of Close Encounters in War we invite articles which investigate irregular and asymmetric conflicts from ancient times to modern and contemporary periods, reaching beyond the study of military tactics and strategy and focusing on the way human beings ‘encounter’ with and within this type of armed conflict. Contributions are invited to promote discussion and scholarly research from established scholars, early-career researchers, and from practitioners who have encountered irregular warfare in the course of their activities.

The topics which can be investigated include but are not limited to:

Irregular, asymmetric and unconventional warfare
Insurgency and counterinsurgency
Resistance and partisan war
Terrorism and counter-terrorism
Violence and trauma
Cultural encounters and identity
Representations of otherness, race, and gender
Religion and politics
Testimonies, witness-representations, oral history and memory studies

The editors of Close Encounters in War invite the submission of 3-500 words abstracts in English by 15th November 2017. Decisions will be made by 2nd January 2018 and the completed articles (6000-8000 words including footnotes, bibliography excluded, in English) will be expected by 15th April 2018. All contributions will go under a process of blind peer-review.

Contact Info:
The editors of CEIW Journal can be contacted via the website
or at:
simona.tobia@closeencountersinwar.com
gianluca.cinelli@closeencountersinwar.com

CfP: A Holiday from War? “Resting” behind the lines during the First World War

Université Paris III – Sorbonne Nouvelle
June 22 & 23, 2018
Maison de la Recherche

Organised by Sarah Montin (EA PRISMES) et Clémentine Tholas-Disset (EA CREW)
Confirmed Keynote Speaker: Tim Kendall (University of Exeter)

What do the soldiers do when they are not on the battlefield? The broadening of the definition of war experience in recent historiography has transformed our spatial and temporal understanding of the conflict, shifting the scope away from the front lines and the activities of combat. Beyond the battlefield and its traditional martial associations emerges another representation of the warrior and the soldier, along with another experience of the war.

In order to further our understanding of the historical, political and aesthetic concerns of life at the rear, long considered a parenthesis in the experience of war, this interdisciplinary conference will address, but will not be limited to, the following themes:

The ideological, medical and administrative construction of the notion of “rest” in the First World War (as it applied to combatants but also auxiliary corps and personnel).
Paramilitary, recreational and artistic activities at the rear; the organisation of activities in particular leisure and entertainment, the role of the army and independent contractors (civilian organisations, etc.)
Sociability between soldiers (hierarchy, tensions, camaraderie); the rear area as meeting place with the other (between soldiers/auxiliary personnel, combatants, locals, men/women, foreign troops, etc.), site of passage, exploration, initiation or “return to the norm” (“rest huts” built to offer a “home away from home”), testimonies from inhabitants of the occupied zones
Articulations and dissonances between community life and time to oneself, collective experience and individual experience
The historic and artistic conceptualisation of the rear area, specific artistic and literary modes at the rear by contrast with writings at the front
Staging life at the rear: scenes of country-life, idyllic representations of non-combat as farniente or hellscapes, bathing parties or penitentiary universes, the figure of the soldier as dilettante, flâneur and solitary rambler, in the productions (memoirs, accounts, correspondence, novels, poetry, visual arts, etc.) of combatants and non-combatants;
Cultural, political and media (re)construction of the figure of the “soldier at rest” (war photography, postcards, songs, etc.); representations of the male and female body at rest, constructions of a new model of masculinity (sexuality and sport), and their place in war production

Full details here.

In order to foster dialogue between the Anglophone, Francophone and Germanophone areas of study, the conference will mainly focus on the Western Front. However proposals dealing with other fronts will be examined. Presentations will preferably be in English.

Please send a 250-word proposal and a short bio before November 20, 2017 to :
montin.sarah@gmail.com and clementine.tholas@univ-paris3.fr
Notification of decision: December 15th 2017

Vacancy: Weatherhead Initiative on Global History Fellow

Faculty of Arts and Sciences, Weatherhead Center for International Affairs

The Weatherhead Initiative on Global History (WIGH) at Harvard University identifies and supports outstanding scholars whose work responds to the growing interest in the encompassing study of global history. We seek to organize a community of scholars interested in the systematic scrutiny of developments that have unfolded across national, regional, and continental boundaries and who propose to analyze the interconnections—cultural, economic, ecological, political and demographic—among world societies. We encourage applicants from all over the world, and especially from outside Europe and North America, hoping to create a global conversation on global history.

WIGH Fellows are appointed for one academic year and are provided time, guidance, office space, and access to Harvard University facilities. They should be prepared to devote their entire time to productive scholarship and may undertake sustained projects of research or other original work. They will join a vibrant community of global history scholars at Harvard. The WIGH Fellowship is residential and Fellows are expected to live in the Cambridge/Boston area for the duration of their appointments unless traveling for pre-approved research purposes, and they are expected to participate in WIGH activities, including a bi-weekly seminar.

More information on the program, including events, affiliated faculty, and current and former fellows can be found at http://wigh.wcfia.harvard.edu/.

Application details here.
Applications are due December 1st, 2017. Letters of reference are due by December 15th, 2017.

CfP: Global War, Global Connections, Global Moments, Zurich, 2018

A century after the First World War, this conference wants to reflect on international relations and entanglements during the global conflict. The aim is to bring together an international group of scholars working on transnational and international fields and aspects of the war, such as diplomacy, rivalry between war partners, secret diplomacy or commemoration.

Core topics:
– International Relations
– Cooperation and Rivalry between War Partners
– Alliances
– Networks, NGOs, Red Cross, Transnational companies
– Visions of Post-War Future, Peace and Order
– Transition from War to Peace (Global War, Local Peace)
– Global War – Global Actors – Local Actors
– Commemoration (transnational)
– Revolutions, Ruptures and Turning Points
– Knowledge transfer, secret diplomacy and intelligence services

Confirmed keynote speakers are Prof. Dr. Maartje Abbenhuis (University of Auckland, New Zealand) and Prof. Dr. Fischer-Tiné (ETH Zurich, Switzerland).

Please send an abstract of 300 – 400 words until 10th November 2017 to the following email: global.war.conference@gmail.com.

Organized by Thomas Schmutz (University of Zurich/Newcastle) and Gwendal Piégais (Université de Bretagne Occidentale, Brest).

Programme
Part of the conference is also a workshop for PhD students and early career scholars.

CFP: War and Imprisonment, May 2018, New York

The capture and confinement of human beings has been—and remains—a central feature of warfare and periods of mass violence both within and between nation-states and among non-state actors. Prisoners apprehended and held during times of conflict—whether military or political—have been both blessing and curse to their keepers. While often valued as cheap labor and lucrative bargaining chips, the high costs—economic, social, political, and environmental—associated with mass imprisonment continue to challenge even the best organized bureaucratic states. This conference seeks to explore these historical and contemporary dynamics across geographic time and space. We welcome interdisciplinary scholarship on topics including, but not limited to, the following:

Prisoner of war camps
Prison towns
Civilian prisoners in wartime
Political imprisonment
Prison culture
Prison violence
Treatment of prisoners
Prison labor in wartime
Race, class, gender, and prison in wartime
Prison architecture and design
Environmental impacts of mass imprisonment

The one-day conference will be held at the Graduate Center of the City University of New York, located at 365 Fifth Avenue in Manhattan, on Friday, May 11, 2018. We envision a program free of geographical, chronological, or methodological restraints.

Individual paper proposals of no more than 300 words and a short CV should be sent to Clarence (Jeff) Hall (chall@qcc.cuny.edu) and Sarah Danielsson (sdanielsson@gc.cuny.edu) no later than December 15, 2017. Accepted presenters will be notified in early 2018. Interested presenters may also be considered for publication in an anthology tentatively scheduled for 2019.